ESAs’ Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) water mission has revealed the negative consequences of the deficit of precipitation that Western Europe is experiencing since February 2011, particularly in France, Germany and the UK.
The lack of sufficient precipitations affects the agricultural sector. It increases food prices and puts industry at risk by drying up shipping routes.
Drought in Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia and Djibouti is pushing tens of thousands of people from their homes as millions face food insecurity in a crisis visible from space. ESA’s SMOS satellite shows that the region’s soil is too dry to grow crops.
In less than four months since launch, the first calibrated images are being delivered by ESA’s SMOS mission. These images of 'brightness temperature' translate into clear information on global variations of soil moisture and ocean salinity to advance our understanding of the water cycle.
2 November 2009 - The second satellite in ESA’s Earth Explorer series – the Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) mission – and the second demonstration satellite under ESA’s Project for Onboard Autonomy (Proba-2) were launched into orb